Cedric Matamoros

September 10, 1979 – December 8, 2012

Cedric Matamoros was born in Baton Rouge, Louisiana on September 10, 1979. He was a Black American who grew up in Louisiana and would later become a husband and then a father. When he died, he was survived by his wife Shelna Matamoros, and his ex-wife, Shantel Fountain. Sadly, beyond these facts, there is not much else known about him. Online there are no records of Cedric Matamoros engaging with community groups, employment opportunities, or any evidence that he even received an education in this state. There are no obituaries, nor blogs or posts from family or friends’ morning over Cedric’s passing. He has no social media accounts where he could have posted about his interests and his talents. There are virtually no pictures of Cedric Matamoros online or on social media. The only picture that I could find was taken during his detainment as seen below:

Cedric Matamoros

Cedric Matamoros

What public records are available include detailed articles about his case and an online article interviewing Cedric’s ex-wife Shantel Fountain. Thus, the life and legacy of Cedric Matamoros is, as of now, entangled with his interactions with the law. 

In the end, Cedric Matamoros would never have his day in court. On December 8, 2012 before his trial date, Matamoros died due to complications with dialysis. Dialysis is needed when a person’s kidney can no longer remove toxins from their blood and is notorious as a costly procedure. Until the defective kidney is replaced, the person will have to rely on dialysis if they are to survive. Dialysis is also time consuming and can affect an individual’s ability to find work on their new schedule. Dying at 33, and already being described as a “long term dialysis patient,” it seems reasonable to surmise that Cedric had been struggling with dialysis for nearly his entire adult life and possibly longer. 

There will never be a trial for him or for people impacted by the crime; his innocence or guilt for that crime will remain unknown. 

Without people there to remember us when we die in hands of the state, we slip through the cracks of society faceless. We become the things we are accused of when the only pictures of us are when we were detained, and when the justice system has made up their minds about someone before giving them a moment to speak. But when the human element is vacant in court proceedings, we lose the ability to find resolution in confidence. When the accused dies in custody before trial, finding resolution becomes even more out of reach. The effect is that the victims of this tragedy will suffer with any doubt they have about this story, and we collectively lose faith in our justice system if it cannot provide what it was designed to do, justice. 

Author: Tyler J. Rosen